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landmark
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stoneunhinged
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Indeed, it is fun.

But her advice to Americans on how to not look American is a bit old-fashioned. Leave your baseball caps and sneakers in the room? My goodness, EVERYBODY wears baseball caps and sneakers these days. That doesn't reveal anything.

Now, wearing a kippah with a New York Mets logo on it? You're screaming, "I'm an American!" Being heavily tattooed and 20% overweight and wearing shorts with long socks and sneakers? American! Wearing pyjamas at the airport? American!

And so on.

:)
balducci
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On Dec 11, 2018, stoneunhinged wrote:

But her advice to Americans on how to not look American is a bit old-fashioned. Leave your baseball caps and sneakers in the room? My goodness, EVERYBODY wears baseball caps and sneakers these days. That doesn't reveal anything.

I assume you are talking mostly about how it is in Germany? Are you still there?

FWIW, when I was overseas visiting Australia and also the U.K. (London) last year, I made a note of how very, very few people there wore baseball caps. Basically, it was no one except for a few (I assume) tourists in hotel lobbies. I actually stopped wearing my ball cap (and switched to a different style of hat) because I felt so out of place on the streets.

Here at home, I noticed last summer (when I was throwing out some old disused sneakers of my own) how few people wore sneakers these days, compared to how it was some years ago.
Make America Great Again! - Trump in 2020 ... "We're a capitalistic society. I go into business, I don't make it, I go bankrupt. They're not going to bail me out. I've been on welfare and food stamps. Did anyone help me? No." - Craig T. Nelson, actor.
landmark
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Buying clothes locally and local fashion sense is key, too. I can often spot visitors to NYC from other US cities or towns by their generic clothing. It's not about price, but New Yorkers of all classes seem to have more individuality in their clothing choices.
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We do not allow the wearing of hats in pubs in England because one cannot ID troublemakers on the CCTV. The street fashion is Baker Boy caps from the Peaky Blinders show.
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

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stoneunhinged
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Tommy is back! Welcome.

Anyway, my point was (yes, in Germany, but also in central and Eastern Europe) that there are a lot of people wearing American clothing. So wearing a baseball cap and sneakers doesn’t point one out as an American. Americans dress like Americans, and non-Americans dress like Americans, too.

That being said, MOST non-Americans don’t dress like Americans, so if you take off the baseball cap and sneakers you’ll be following the CIA Disguise Chief’s advice, and the advice is not inaccurate.

Here’s Jeff’s rules for how not to look American:

1. Lose weight
2. Cover tattoos (unless you also have piercings and purple or green hair)
3. No baseball caps or sneakers
4. Dress up, not down....
5. ...unless you’re a woman: skip the make-up, and wear very plain hairstyles (like a pony tail)
6. Never wear shorts. Ever
7. If over 30, wear facial hair
8. Basketball jerseys might be OK, but don’t wear baseball or hockey jerseys. NO HOCKEY JERSEYS!
9. For businessmen: wear cheap suits and black socks
10. No jeans or sweats

Please allow me to comment about #s 9 and 10.

#9 is exclusively for Germany, since in my travels outside of Germany, I’m usually on vacation and haven’t paid attention to such things. But German businessmen do not dress as well as American businessmen. (Trust me on this: I commute five hours a day four days a week on public trains. I know what I’m talking about here. I can spot an American businessman within seconds. I often start a chat, and I’ve never yet made a mistake. Unless, of course, I was speaking to a Russian spy.)

#10 is the same point as with the baseball caps: sure, everyone else is wearing them. I’d say over 90% of the people I run into every day are wearing jeans. BUT: something like 99% of the American non-businessmen wear jeans (and sneakers and baseball caps), so wearing non-jeans will point away from your Americanness.

Lastly: #11. Dress ethnically (except for that kippah with the sports logo). Brown skin has an advantage. (White privilege doesn’t reallly export well.) Put on that turban! Mumus and Lavalavas are great! Kilts rock!

Or...RANT ON!

I have never, ever, not once, felt unsafe outside of the United States. If, somehow, the North American media or the US government has given you the impression that Americans are walking around as potential targets, you have been deceived. Sure, I might be a target—for lightening, for a drunk driver, for a stroke. But that walking around the streets of Paris or Cluj or Bratislava or Bristol or Seoul or Johannesburg? Nah...don’t worry about it. Just wear that baseball cap and those sneakers and feel safe.

And to Balducci: yeah, I’m still in Germany, going on 24 years now. Been married twice and have four kids, and will leave no time soon. I have lots of time to watch how people dress. Smile

(Secret tip for Germany only: Germans use a very strange version of a quarter Windsor knot in their ties. How you tie your tie is CIA stuff, just as well as choice of belt or socks. No button down shirts!)
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The police and spies will dress like the people they are following. So if for example, they are following a businessman then the police will wear business suits, whereas if they are following a magician then they will look like they have just come from a gay man’s garage sale.
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0pus
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Quote:
On Dec 12, 2018, stoneunhinged wrote:
Germans use a very strange version of a quarter Windsor knot in their ties.


I am not familiar with a quarter Windsor knot. Is it explained anywhere (or can you explain it)?

For the record, I do not personally use the full Windsor knot - It is like wearing a softball on a choker around your neck.

My preferred knot is the half Windsor - it is nice and symmetrical.

I also use the four in hand, which is good if I am in a hurry or I think that the tie is a little too short for my (long-ish) body if I tie a half Windsor.
stoneunhinged
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Quote:
On Dec 12, 2018, 0pus wrote:

I am not familiar with a quarter Windsor knot. Is it explained anywhere (or can you explain it)?



Maybe I have the terminology wrong. For me a "quarter Windsor" means not wrapping the shorter end around either side of the loop, if you know what I mean.

But maybe that's not even what the men are doing. Whatever it is they do, the knot is flat and has no pinch.

I've tried to Google for photos, but this is the best I can do:

Click here to view attached image.
stoneunhinged
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stoneunhinged
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And click this link:

https://www.amazon.de/Krawatten-Set-Kraw......1M30EBSP



UPDATE!

For fun I've watched several videos, and they're tying half-Windsors. They just push them flat and don't pinch the knot.

Spies beware!
0pus
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Weak half Windsor knots.

I think it robs the half Windsor of the look that recommends it. Failure to "pinch" the tie renders the knot bland.

Feh!
ed rhodes
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On Dec 12, 2018, stoneunhinged wrote:

8. Basketball jerseys might be OK, but don’t wear baseball or hockey jerseys. NO HOCKEY



I never wear sports jerseys. Would I be in trouble if I wore a Batman jersey? I’ve got three of those’
"All the world's a stage, but the play is badly cast!" - Oscar Wilde
ed rhodes
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I remember the opposite in a James Bond book (I want to say “Live and Let Die,” but I'm not certain.) Where Bond was given tips to look more like an American. Of course, he was in (Fleming’s version) of America at the time.
"All the world's a stage, but the play is badly cast!" - Oscar Wilde
tommy
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I am old enough to recall when one could not find a pair of Levi’s in England and also wearing Davy Crockett hat.

As far as neckties go I am rather old-fashioned and wear them short and sometimes as a belt, trying hard to look like Gary Cooper. https://qph.fs.quoracdn.net/main-qimg-92......e22e623d
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

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S2000magician
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I hate neckties.

For those of you who don't, here are 30 ways to tie a necktie.

Go wild.

(The title of the article is "30 Different Ways to Tie a Tie Knot". [Emphasis added.] I presume they wrote it that way to make sure that the reader wouldn't think that it was 30 identical ways to tie a tie knot.)
rockwall
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I guess if I move to Thailand I can wear whatever I want since there won't be any hope of me ever passing for Thai!
stoneunhinged
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But if you wore a Thai tie, that wouldn’t make your tie a tai tai—unless you wanted to marry it and speak Chinese. But if you married it in May, it would also be a Mai Tai, but then you do do all of these things—wearing a Thai tie Mai Tai as your tai tai.

The question is: are there 30 ways to tie your Thai tie Mai Tai tai tai?

Bill would just drink the Mai Tai and tell his tie to go tie itself, because he doesn’t wear ties. (He’s Californian, you know.)

I myself wear bow ties, which brings us back to the thread’s topic:

Bow ties that are tied are very American. The only bow ties I ever see in Germany are permanently tied, like what some wear with tuxedos.

Spies beware!
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On Dec 18, 2018, rockwall wrote:
I guess if I move to Thailand I can wear whatever I want since there won't be any hope of me ever passing for Thai!

Why couldn't you pass for being Thai?
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